I Hate the Grammys Show

@FourWalls (9475)
United States
February 11, 2016 9:42pm CST
The Grammy Awards show will be on CBS this coming Monday (February 15). I hate that show. Why would a music geek loathe what is universally the most prestigious music award? THIS IS MY OPINION. (Please keep that in mind!!!) I think the TV program -- more precisely, the network's desire for high ratings for the TV program -- is impacting the nominations for "big awards." Here's my rationale for that thinking: last year, there were 84 categories in which Grammy awards were presented. Of those 84 awards, only THIRTEEN were shown on TV. The other 71 were given out in ceremonies before the TV show started, then announced in groups before commercial breaks on the show. The TV show featured NO bluegrass, NO Americana, NO blues, NO gospel, NO traditional R&B, and NO traditional country. I think this urge to attract viewers also influences the nominations. The Grammy rules state that songs and albums are to be nominated for "artistic achievement, technical proficiency and overall excellence in the recording industry, without regard to album sales or chart position." That rarely happens, however. Consider the 2013 awards, which gave the "Record of the Year" to "Get Lucky" by Daft Punk but didn't even nominate "Cover Me Up" by Jason Isbell or "That's Where I'm From" by Robbie Fulks. Why? Because 28.5 million people will tune in for Daft Punk, but not for Isbell or Fulks. (Oddly enough, now that Isbell has had his "breakthrough" thanks to that 2013 album [Southeastern] that wasn't nominated and has become more of a "name" act, he's now got a Grammy nomination!) Roxanne Cash won three Grammy awards last year, but she wasn't shown on TV. Why? She's got a history on her own (Nashville Songwriter Hall of Fame member, 30-plus year recording career), not to mention being Johnny Cash's daughter, but they wouldn't let her on the televised portion. She doesn't run around in plastic and neon the way other female singers do, of course, which may explain why she had to get her trophies off screen. I truly believe that the integrity of the award itself is being minimized because the NARAS (the governing body behind the Grammys) has to pull in ratings for CBS. After all, the awards are held during the "big sweeps" month of February. Consider this Monday's show, where the surviving members of the Eagles will team up with Jackson Browne for what will most likely be the final performance by the band. They'll do "Take It Easy" in tribute to Glenn Frey, the Eagles' co-founder (and co-writer [with Browne] of "Take It Easy") who died last month. This is part of the Grammys' longstanding "love 'em when they're dead" mentality that turns my stomach. Thankfully, Frey did win Grammy awards in his lifetime (six total, ranging from "Best of My Love" in 1974 to "How Long" in 2008), and I can understand that this is probably the "big stage" on which to present the tribute (unless they film the memorial service/concert in L.A. later this month and show it on HBO). But to me, based on their history, this is more of a ratings grab than a real tribute. In 2004 the Grammys, who had never nominated Warren Zevon for anything, gave him five nominations and two awards....for dying. The television producers, who would normally have never allowed Zevon on if he had been alive, showed Zevon's children and several friends, including Jackson Browne (who helped get Zevon his record deal in 1976 and co-produced his big Excitable Boy album featuring "Werewolves of London" in 1978), Dwight Yoakam, Billy Bob Thornton, and Timothy Schmit, singing along with Zevon's farewell to his fans, family, and friends, "Keep Me In Your Heart." None of that would have happened if Zevon hadn't died. Similarly, Steve Goodman was only awarded for writing the classic "City of New Orleans" after he died of leukemia in 1984 (thanks to Willie Nelson's cover). When Arlo Guthrie had a hit with the song in 1972 it wasn't even nominated, so apparently the only thing that made the song suddenly "good" in that 12-year span was Goodman's death. (To further prove this, the Grammys initiated a new category, "best contemporary folk recording," and guess who won two of the first three Grammys in that category? Yep, Steve Goodman [for his posthumous Unfinished Business and the all-star Tribute to Steve Goodman live album].) As for the Frey tribute, despite the fact that the Eagles were my favorite band in the 70's, I won't be watching. I'm not going to fall for their "play on sympathy" approach to get more ratings. Glenn Frey meant, and still means, more to me than an overnight ratings result for some two-bit awards show. I'll watch it on You Tube.
5 people like this
5 responses
@JohnRoberts (38704)
• Los Angeles, California
12 Feb 16
My reason for disliking the Grammys is simple: no credibility. Milli Vanilli. The Stones settling for a career award. Debby Boone. A history of ridiculous winners.
1 person likes this
@FourWalls (9475)
• United States
12 Feb 16
Aw, c'mon, John, we all know Jethro Tull is heavy metal! That wasn't their first mistake in mislabeling music, though: in 1964, they gave the "best rock and roll song" award to......(wait for it) Nino Temp & April Stevens for "Deep Purple"!!! Seriously!!! Listen to this! No wonder the preachers said kids were going to hell for listening to this! (Worthless trivia: this song goes back to the 30's, and it is where the hard rock band Deep Purple took their name from...it was one of the founding members' grandmother's favorite song!)
April Stevens & Nino Tempo are a brother and sister act from New York. Formed in the early 1960s when Nino Tempo and April Stevens signed as a duo with Atco ...
@Dalane (705)
• United States
12 Feb 16
@FourWalls That clip is hysterical.
1 person likes this
@JohnRoberts (38704)
• Los Angeles, California
12 Feb 16
@FourWalls I thought Love is Strange was the big hit for April and Nino. You just sort of took the rock right out of Deep Purple.
1 person likes this
@teamfreak16 (35106)
• Colorado Springs, Colorado
14 Feb 16
I like Jethro Tull, but that's when I stopped watching.
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (118231)
• Switzerland
12 Feb 16
I never watch the Grammy Awards, good point.
1 person likes this
@celticeagle (114155)
• Boise, Idaho
12 Feb 16
Good argument. I won''t be watching it either. I usually don't know who half the people are on it anyway.
1 person likes this
@Dalane (705)
• United States
12 Feb 16
Good points here. The show is completely skewed towards the young. It's all a ratings game as you say. Nice post.
1 person likes this